Anna Gregoline | September 1, 2004
Beauty contests, despite some criticism, are still very popular. In your opinion, what are the main reasons for their popularity?

Jackie Mason | September 2, 2004
[hidden by request]

Scott Hardie | September 3, 2004
The swimsuit portion of the competition.

Nah, seriously, I think it's because of a very small number of people who care very passionately about pageants. The kind of parents who dressed up JonBenet Ramsey like a toy doll, makeup included, are one example. Pageants give these people a tradition to uphold, one that they can pretend is important. It gives them a little world full of rigid rules where they can declare the heroes, instead of facing the uncertainty of real world. It's essentially a hobby, same as many others, though it's one that seems increasingly sexist (for adult pageants) or creepy (for child pageants) as the years pass.

Anthony Lewis | September 9, 2004
I don't know why they remain popular with other folks, but personally I prefer the Miss Universe Pageant where I always root for Miss Venezuela. Rarely is there a more beautiful woman in that pageant than whoever is representing Venezuela.

Yeah, the Miss Universe Pageant is the one I dig the most.

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